Military families show support for kin in Afghanistan
It was mission accomplished for May Adshead Saturday. The facilitator of Sault Ste. Marie Military Family Support Group and 14 other volunteers spent an hour staple gunning and wrapping about 300 yellow ribbons on poles on Queen Street East, Pim Street, Great Northern Road And Second Line from Great Northern to Leighs Bay Road.
The colourful markers show backing for about 20 Sault residents serving in Afghanistan in the regular and reserve forces.
"Their community is behind them, supporting them," said Adshead.
"I think (the ribbons) are awesome."
A fundraising barbecue held Canada Day at Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25 and personal donations from support group members covered the roughly $100 supply cost.
The ribbons will stay up on Queen Street until September and the remaining streets until early 2009.
The support group, formed in 2007, is entering a float in the Community Day parade Saturday.
It will include the names of Canadians killed in Afghanistan and the names of local residents who have served in that country and other nations since a series of terrorist attacks killed about 3,000 people in the United States in 2001.
Six members of the 49th Field Regiment leave for Afghanistan later this month. (Godspeed to these troops and their families)
Two or three of those reserve members, dressed in their military fatigues, are expected to walk along the support group's float.
Yellow ribbons will be distributed to parade watchers along Queen Street East.
The support group has about 60 members now attending monthly meetings at Branch 25.
"It's growing daily," said Adshead.
Her son, Brandon, served in Afghanistan in 2007 with the 49th Field Regiment. Now a member of the Canadian army, the Sir James Dunn collegiate graduate is expected to return for a second deployment in 2009.
Master Cpl. Paul Franklin, a solder from Alberta who lost both legs in Afghanistan in 2006, will speak at a pasta dinner at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25, 96 Great Northern Rd,
Sault Ste Marie on Aug. 14.
Advance tickets cost $15.
His speech is not recommended for children under 10.
For tickets, call (705) 945-8721.
A golf tournament is planned at Crimson Ridge Aug. 15.